Chaucer's Agents: Cause and Representation in Chaucerian Narrative
Chaucer's Agents draws on medieval and modern theories of agency to provide fresh readings of the major Chaucerian texts. Collectively, those readings aim to illuminate Chaucer's responses to two greta problems of agency: the degree to which human beings and forces qualify as agents, and the equal reference of "agent" to initiators and instruments. Each chapter surveys medieval conceptions of the agency in question-- allegorical Realities, intelligent animals, pagan gods, women, and the author--and then follows that kind of agent through representative Chaucerian texts. Readers have long recognized Chaucer's interest in questions of causation; Van Dyke shows that his answers to those questions shape, even constitute, his narratives. --Fairleigh Dickinson University Press.
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acknowledges action acts agency agent allegory animals appears argue becomes begins birds Book calls Canterbury cause chapter characters Chaucer Chaucerian Christian citing claim course Criseyde Criseyde's critics crow cultural defined desire discuss divine dream edited effect English fact Fame female fictional forces forms gives gods hand History House human ideal implies individual instance intent John kind Knight's later Law's Tale less lines literary Literature Mars meaning Medieval merely Middle Ages Minnis misogyny moral move names narrative narrator natural notes Nun's object observes Oxford pagan particular passage perhaps persona philosophers pilgrims poem poet Poetics political position present Prologue question readers reason refer regard representation represents responsibility rhetorical seems similarly social sometimes story Studies subjectivity suggests Tale texts Theory thing tion Troilus turns University University Press Venus vision voice Wife women writes
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